RvR Progression Pack

In a previous post I floated the idea of Skaven being a part of the RvR ‘Power’ Pack. As we’ve just learned, Skaven access will be granted from a new Skaven “zone” that will be an RvR dungeon accessible to RR65+ players. We can assume the purchase of one or more RvR Packs to be necessary for this access — I’m hoping my prediction pans out and the Power Pack is where this is found. For this post, I’ll discuss some thoughts I have about progression and ideas for the ‘Progression’ Pack. As things are starting to come more into focus, players might need some help progressing their toons.

Why Do We RvR?
Glory, realm pride, killing, pwnage, fun. Some or maybe all of these are on your list of reasons for jumping into the RvR lakes. But let’s be honest, it’s not all about that. List some other reasons … experience, renown, influence, gear, loot. The other side of that coin.

Despite what players say, many don’t mind chasing carrots. If you do, you’re playing the wrong kind of game. MMO’s are all about progression treadmills. Advancing your character to achieve more skill, power, and loot are a big part of the genre. In WAR, there are multiple paths to accomplish this: running scenarios, PvE questlines, but RvR should be the main channel to further your toon.

Many of us expect a little sumthin-sumthin for the effort. That’s the XP, renown, influence, weapons, gear, and loot talking. Those things make you smile and feel accomplishment for all the “hard work”. (Like how I hope to feel when I finally get my Royal weapon.) To be fair, there are those rare individuals who simply enjoy the PvP for what it is and are content to just fight.

The Greed for Renown
Who hasn’t joined a warband and rolled through a zone zerging any poor sap unlucky enough to round a corner in Black Crag. In the blink of an eye the keeps are taken, claimed, BO’s capped, and the timers going should VP’s fall short. Just think of all that RENOWN!

How much rage have you read in region chat when a group goes rogue capping BO’s before the zerg can? How many nice players ask to “hold off on that cap so everyone can get here”? The zerg must be fed and only renown will satiate its hunger. Every drop must be gained. It’s what makes you sit at a BO for not just the first, but also the second tick. It’s worth it as all the purple goes by on a zone flip for everything you’ve helped take.

How will we get renown and contribution after 1.4? How do you stem the greed? If I volunteer to guard a BO instead of moving from BO to BO, will it be worth my while? What incentive would I have to escort the Resource Carrier? What if the big renown is taking the keep? Why should I be left out to dry hump a BO? I’m hoping we see something like Skar has proposed, but will just the flip feed the need? And if we’re all lagging the shit out of the zone as Mr. Meh fears, will there ever be any actual progress?

The Endangered Armor Set
Speaking of progression … armor sets are important to making your toon better. The sets prior to Tier 4 are good but you can get by with alternatives. Annihilator is where they start to get really nice and you accrue wards (which become necessary for some end game content).

Getting gear in WAR has always been dicey with the whacky lottery system and loot bags. It appears as though the number of opportunities to win Annihilator will be halved — assuming it will still be winnable by taking keeps (although I doubt it). Take it from one of the unlucky … that doesn’t bode well for some players’ progress.

How will players fill this gap in their armor chain? Bloodlord from Bastion Stair? Guilds probably won’t be able to claim keeps anymore, so forget about the hand-me-down bags benevolent guild leaders pass to players in need. Will there be a zone-wide roll for bags thus increasing their number? Probably not and would that throw even more uncertainty into the already dubious contribution system?

Slowing the Gear(s)
Many will laugh, “Who cares about stupid Annihilator?” Oh yeah? The changes to the RvR campaign are going to do just what BioWare Mythic has wanted: to slow things down. You can scoff all you want about Annihilator’s possible limbo of accessibility but it should sink in that this will also affect access to Invader, Warlord, and Sovereign. Still laughing?

“That’s okay, we can buy gear!”

Sure, but with the inflation of price for all RvR armor buying gear is a potentially long and deflating route. Officer Medallions are the most common RvR currency so it shouldn’t be too difficult to buy Annihilator. Though as you go up the scale it gets more and more cost prohibitive.

Conqueror? Fewer zone flips means fewer Conqueror Crests and Officer Medallions, so you better run every time LOTD flips! Getting crests of any kind is a slow-go so imagine how long it’s going to take for those higher end sets. You’re definitely not laughing now.

Slower zone flips, players sucked off to fight in the Skaven “zone” … just how often will we be seeing those once numerous city sieges? That’s where you have your best shots at Invader/Warlord/Royal Crests! Even with how often they occur now, they don’t guarantee anything as Vizo explains here, here, and here. His second post is the most telling (and depressing) if you have bad luck and need to buy your Sovereign (let alone Invader or Warlord). Check his math and grimace. Those PvE dungeons aren’t sounding so bad, are they?

Progression? You Said Squat About Progression
A lot to absorb with my saying nothing about the ‘Progression’ Pack. I wanted to set the stage for the gears of progress grinding to a halt. It’s coming so get resigned to the fact that the days of rolling in riches of freenown and endless gear will be a thing of the past. The RvR changes on the horizon sound good. They sound fun. I’m looking forward to them. But with any sort of expansion, even one as unorthodox as what we have on deck, the goal is to get players to play for as long as possible.

Guess that’s where the Progression Pack comes in.

We’ve heard little bits here and there but one can assume the purchasable WAR Tracts (for one free level) will come in this pack. I also assume some sort of mechanism will be here that helps renown gain and/or influence gain. Should it stop there?

Not knowing just how slow things will get, how will players be able to get these armors if the opportunities that yield them become a thing of the past? Will we see other methods or in-game aids to getting medallions and crests? Or are we doomed to an armor recession where players out-level armor sets because it takes so long to acquire them.

And we don’t even know how the two sets beyond Sovereign will be attainable. Ponder that for a moment.

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4 Responses to “RvR Progression Pack”

  1. Yeah, this should be interesting. Being still without an 80 or a full set of Sov myself, I’m curious about how all this will work. Also… kind of concerned about the effect it may have on up-and-coming alts?

    Although, I’m curious about why you don’t think you’ll be able to claim keeps anymore? It seems to me that the only way to upgrade keeps is still to claim them, unless some info has been released to the contrary?

    Though your point about armor is good, I don’t think PVE is the answer either. I’ve been in LV over 50 times with my Zealot, and I’ve asked guildies and friends to mention it if they see the drop… I still don’t have my freaking shoulders from that place. Clearly, as mentioned, loot tables are wonky.

    Long story short though, I really do think the game will come out better after this. It may anger some people… may anger a LOT of people, but I’d say that this will be better for the game in the long run. That may be wishful thinking, since I really enjoy this game and want to see it do well… but here’s hoping…

    • I have one main ALT (Warrior Priest) that is RR56. He really doesn’t see a lot of playtime unless my guild needs some heals on a TOVL run. I blame him for my BW not being 80 because at one point I thought the WP would be my main. The guild needed heals and I could always get into runs with him. DAMN YOU WP!!!

      He has full Invader but trying to get the Warlord has become a challenge. It used to be easy to just run the old King instance and get your Royals … break them down and buy Warlord without ever setting foot in those God-awful PQs. Now the price to buy is so high it’s a deflater. I have no concern to get Sov on this toon as my main already has the full set.

      I think the changes coming will be good, but knowing the way the average player is … they will need rewards. If they are too slow to come that can be a problem. This isn’t Korea.

  2. Okay, lets not assume that the zone flips will happen less frequent. Mythic will have decided on a time, which is the time it takes to flip a zone using resources. Lets say it’s 45 mins to 1 hour. Now obviously the other side will be able to interfer, but if you have overwhelming numbers, then nothing will stop you from flipping that zone, regardless of the mechanism. If you have the numbers you may try to run multiple zone flips at the same time.

    Don’t think that Mythic don’t have a baseline figure for flipping a zone under both modes currently.

    What I believe Mythic are looking for, is a system where people are spread, yet are all contributing to the war, while reducing the loading in zones.

    What they’ll not know, is how many city seiges will be invoked until the new zone capture solution has been bedded in for a while. Then they can tweak with resource targets which is tied into the timer.

    • Agreed, zones will eventually flip and at times faster than others. If there is balance and no one side has the advantage zone flips could take forever. I recall spending hours trying to flip a zone where there was a nice back-and-forth battle going on. But then you look and your renown bar has barely moved. Did I have fun? Yes. But how many nights of that before players say “fun” isn’t enough? This is an MMO after all. We all likes rewardses.

      And with the focus becoming a single keep, it could turn into forts again if even a smaller force is dug in within. No Keep Lord will be there to help by drawing fire.

      Playing around last night on the PTS a couple of us capped a BO. Unless I am mistaken, we got no renown. If zone flips are it then I expect a huge resurgence in people flocking to scenarios.

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